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IIT Roorkee: Evaluates possibilities of using wild biomass for low carbon energy production

IIT Roorkee: Professor Vinay Sharma and Professor Rajat Agarwal from the Indian Institute of Technology Roorkee conceived a project on the use of wild organic residues for low cost energy generation. The project titled “Socio-economic value creation through forest bio-residue energy generation in alignment with the United Nations SDGs” has been taken up as a pilot project financially supported by the National Mission on Himalayan Studies under the Ministry of Environment and Forests, Government of India.

Simultaneously, the focus was on establishing sustainable management practices of indigenous green technologies in the Himalayan region of Uttarakhand along with development of a complementary source of low cost energy generation from wild biowaste residues.

Initiating this project, as per the plan, more than 1000 quintals of pine needles were collected from 100 acres of forest land with the help of Forest Department, Uttarakhand. These pine needles were crushed and processed with the help of machines and crushers designed and developed in the laboratories of IIT Roorkee and UPES, Dehradun.

Prior to the launch of the project, community engagement and capacity building programs such as community engagement and capacity building were undertaken in the form of regular training and workshop sessions in villages and focused group discussions between experts and local people. A training cum workshop session program was conducted for the beneficiaries of the villages to learn the installation and operation of briquetting machines and crushers, where doubts and queries related to operation and safety were resolved by the experts.

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Dr. Gaurav Dixit, Faculty, Department of Management Studies, IIT Roorkee, developed “Himalayan Briquettes Production and Management Software”, a multipurpose and user-friendly mobile application to integrate the entire value chain by connecting the seller and buyer of briquettes. Now the second phase of the project is being envisioned on a large scale for industrial expansion, in which fires arising in many forests of Uttarakhand which can be responsible for the destruction of hectares of land.

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